A lawsuit has been brought against Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Director of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, Robert Gordon, claiming that executive orders in place due to the coronavirus pandemic have violated the constitutional rights of several businesses. Lawyers for the plaintiff's announced the lawsuit Tuesday.
Five businesses are named in the lawsuit:
- Signature Southeby’s International Realty, Inc., a full-service residential brokerage in Birmingham
- Executive Property Maintenance, Inc. in Canton provides to commercial, municipal, and residential clients lawns, snow and ice maintenance; fertilization; property maintenance; planting; softscape; hardscape; design and build; irrigation; and water feature services.
- Intraco Corporation, Inc. in Troy is a major diversified exporter of architectural and automotive glass, automotive chemicals, and other goods.
- Casite Intraco, LLC in Troy distributes engine oil, fuel additives, and other after-market products for automobiles.
- Bahash & Company, LLC doing business as Hillsdale Jewelers is a storefront retailer of jewelry and offers jewelry-repair services in Hillsdale.
Attorneys for the businesses represent the Butzel Long law firm, and the plaintiff's in the case are demanding a trial by jury.
The lawsuit claims that as a result of Whitmer's executive orders, those decisions have "shuttered civil society, placed 10 million people under house arrest and taken jobs away from nearly 1.2 million people, all without due process of law."
.@GovWhitmer reiterates re-opening Michigan will depend on people adhering to the rules. "We're going to have to measure every step of the way as we re-engage a sector of our economy, we've got to watch and make sure we don't have another increase in COVID-19 cases." @wxyzdetroit pic.twitter.com/3rOKyu1rsI
— Jenn Schanz (@JennSchanzWXYZ) April 29, 2020
Plaintiff's in the lawsuit say that Whitmer has not disclosed the "data or methodology" used to justify her executive actions under the current state of emergency.
The lawsuit goes on to say that the intention of the executive orders is to "flatten the curve" of deaths and positive COVID-19 cases, while attempting to relieve overwhelmed hospitals, but plaintiff's for the lawsuit claim that, although the curve has flattened in recent weeks, the governor has "issued stricter and confusing Executive Orders that unreasonably and unnecessarily interfere with the Plaintiffs’ constitutional rights."
Read court documents for the lawsuit below.
Additional Coronavirus information and resources:
Click here for a page with resources including a COVID-19 overview from the CDC, details on cases in Michigan, a timeline of Governor Gretchen Whitmer's orders since the outbreak, coronavirus' impact on Southeast Michigan, and links to more information from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, the CDC and the WHO.
View a global coronavirus tracker with data from Johns Hopkins University.
Find out how you can help metro Detroit restaurants struggling during the pandemic.
See all of our Helping Each Other stories.
See complete coverage on our Coronavirus Continuing Coverage page.